Leisure Centre granted over £400,000 for solar panel installation

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Cllr Lesley Rollings and Cllr Trevor Young sttod out side the West Lindsey leisure centre, with Amy Minnikin

West Lindsey District Council is thrilled to announce the successful allocation of £401,500 funding from the government’s Swimming Pool Support Fund.

The money will be used to install hundreds more solar panels at the West Lindsey Leisure Centre in Gainsborough in a bid to further reduce fuel bills and cut carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels. This initiative, part of Phase II of the government's Swimming Pool Support Fund, aims to make buildings more efficient. 

It supports West Lindsey’s existing policy of incorporating solar power wherever possible on its buildings. The aligned goals are controlling costs and contributing to cleaner air and a more sustainable environment - directly benefiting residents’ health and wellbeing.

The funding will be utilised to install 545 solar PV panels on the swimming pool roof, resulting in a significant reduction of 42 tonnes of CO2 emissions - equivalent to planting 1,966 trees, and a saving of 221 MWh of annual energy production, which is equivalent to the energy used by dozens of homes each year. This installation showcases the council’s commitment to both environmental stewardship and fiscal responsibility.

Chair of the Prosperous Communities Committee at the Council, Cllr Lesley Rollings, said the investment would have a long-term impact on the facility. 

She said: 

“The installation of PV panels not only aligns with the council's commitment to sustainability, but this investment will kickstart efforts to ‘future-proof’ provision at the leisure centre, creating an eco-friendly facility.

“The changes will reduce CO2 emissions and reduce energy bills ensuring the leisure centre remains a vibrant hub for recreation and wellness for residents of all ages across our district.”

The West Lindsey Leisure Centre in Gainsborough, which is run by Everyone Active, provides vital access and programmes to various user groups within the local community.

Cllr Trevor Young, Leader of West Lindsey District Council, highlighted how initiatives like this are integral to the Council's strategy for promoting health equity and community engagement. 

He said:

“This facility, being the sole public swimming pool in our district, stands as a beacon of community spirit and inclusivity, offering diverse programs that cater to all residents. We're seeing a heartening rise in participation in physical activities and sports, reflecting our community's growing commitment to health and wellness. This funding support is crucial, not just for sustaining this essential service, but for boosting our efforts to address health inequalities and to continue enhancing our residents' quality of life. Our partnership in this project is a proud testament to our dedication to keeping such vital facilities thriving, even in the face of increasing utility pressures.”

In November 2019, the Council resolved to make the Council’s activities net-zero carbon by 2050. The Council and Everyone Active have implemented a number of energy reduction projects to reduce energy consumption at the leisure centre. This includes changing to more energy efficient equipment, including LED lighting, variable speed drive, water saving devices, lighting sensors, and reducing energy wastage through installation of pool covers.

Cllr Stephen Bunney, Chairman of the Environment, Sustainability, and Climate working group at the Council said: 

“The implementation of PV panels is a significant step towards reducing the leisure centre’s carbon footprint and simultaneously lowering energy costs. By harnessing solar energy, the centre will be able to generate clean electricity to power its operations, contributing to a greener and more environmentally friendly community.”

Everyone Active, has a clear net zero strategy, including carbon literacy training, colleague engagement, and ensuring all buildings are powered by 100% renewable energy.

Peter Smith, Everyone Active’s contract manager, said: 

“We are delighted the Council has been successful in Phase II of the funding and it is great news that this project will further reduce the centre’s carbon footprint. Everyone Active is proud to work alongside the Council, as part of our Net Zero Strategy, to help achieve our company’s net zero ambitions.”

For more details about the West Lindsey Leisure Centre or to become a member please visit the Everyone Active website.

 

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